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Genesis 37 :: New International Version (NIV)

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Joseph’s Dreams

Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:1 - Jacob lived in the land where his father had stayed, the land of Canaan.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:2 - This is the account of Jacob’s family line. Joseph, a young man of seventeen, was tending the flocks with his brothers, the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives, and he brought their father a bad report about them.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:3 - Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made an ornate[fn] robe for him.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:4 - When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:5 - Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:6 - He said to them, “Listen to this dream I had:
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:7 - We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:8 - His brothers said to him, “Do you intend to reign over us? Will you actually rule us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:9 - Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers. “Listen,” he said, “I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:10 - When he told his father as well as his brothers, his father rebuked him and said, “What is this dream you had? Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow down to the ground before you?”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:11 - His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind.

Joseph Sold by His Brothers

Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:12 - Now his brothers had gone to graze their father’s flocks near Shechem,
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:13 - and Israel said to Joseph, “As you know, your brothers are grazing the flocks near Shechem. Come, I am going to send you to them.” “Very well,” he replied.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:14 - So he said to him, “Go and see if all is well with your brothers and with the flocks, and bring word back to me.” Then he sent him off from the Valley of Hebron. When Joseph arrived at Shechem,
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:15 - a man found him wandering around in the fields and asked him, “What are you looking for?”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:16 - He replied, “I’m looking for my brothers. Can you tell me where they are grazing their flocks?”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:17 - “They have moved on from here,” the man answered. “I heard them say, ‘Let’s go to Dothan.’ ” So Joseph went after his brothers and found them near Dothan.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:18 - But they saw him in the distance, and before he reached them, they plotted to kill him.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:19 - “Here comes that dreamer!” they said to each other.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:20 - “Come now, let’s kill him and throw him into one of these cisterns and say that a ferocious animal devoured him. Then we’ll see what comes of his dreams.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:21 - When Reuben heard this, he tried to rescue him from their hands. “Let’s not take his life,” he said.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:22 - “Don’t shed any blood. Throw him into this cistern here in the wilderness, but don’t lay a hand on him.” Reuben said this to rescue him from them and take him back to his father.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:23 - So when Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped him of his robe—the ornate robe he was wearing—
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:24 - and they took him and threw him into the cistern. The cistern was empty; there was no water in it.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:25 - As they sat down to eat their meal, they looked up and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead. Their camels were loaded with spices, balm and myrrh, and they were on their way to take them down to Egypt.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:26 - Judah said to his brothers, “What will we gain if we kill our brother and cover up his blood?
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:27 - Come, let’s sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him; after all, he is our brother, our own flesh and blood.” His brothers agreed.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:28 - So when the Midianite merchants came by, his brothers pulled Joseph up out of the cistern and sold him for twenty shekels[fn] of silver to the Ishmaelites, who took him to Egypt.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:29 - When Reuben returned to the cistern and saw that Joseph was not there, he tore his clothes.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:30 - He went back to his brothers and said, “The boy isn’t there! Where can I turn now?”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:31 - Then they got Joseph’s robe, slaughtered a goat and dipped the robe in the blood.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:32 - They took the ornate robe back to their father and said, “We found this. Examine it to see whether it is your son’s robe.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:33 - He recognized it and said, “It is my son’s robe! Some ferocious animal has devoured him. Joseph has surely been torn to pieces.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:34 - Then Jacob tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and mourned for his son many days.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:35 - All his sons and daughters came to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. “No,” he said, “I will continue to mourn until I join my son in the grave.” So his father wept for him.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 37:36 - Meanwhile, the Midianites[fn] sold Joseph in Egypt to Potiphar, one of Pharaoh’s officials, the captain of the guard.
NIV Footnotes
The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain; also in verses 23 and 32.
That is, about 8 ounces or about 230 grams
Samaritan Pentateuch, Septuagint, Vulgate and Syriac (see also verse 28); Masoretic Text Medanites

Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®
Used by Permission of Biblica, Inc.® All rights reserved worldwide.

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For more information on this translation, see the NIV Preface.

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